First Word: "Bye"

30 05 2007

Molly & I think it’s official: Alex now has his first word, and it’s “bye.” He’s been waving “bye” for a long time now, and last night/this morning he’s started coupling the hand wave with the word.

Yes, he’s been making a lot of noises that sound like words for the past several months. And when he gets going with his babbling, it sounds like he’s talking in another language — he’s got the rhythm and intonation down. But this is the first time that he seems to consistently use a word in the right context. (“Mamama when he’s unhappy and Da to mean “anything I can point to” don’t count.)

A New Haircut and a Balloon…

29 05 2007

Yesterday, Molly took Alex to get his second haircut. They gave him a balloon at the end. He apparently fussed when they tried to tie it to his hand on the way out, but he started enjoying the balloon once he got home.

Then I guess he got suspicious of me and the camera.

Dad! Get me out of here!

Our Little Gardener

29 05 2007

This past weekend, Alex helped Molly put our cherry tomato plants into pots. He had fun.

Although it turns out he finds it more fun to water his hand than it is to water the plants.


Our Baby Linus…

20 05 2007

So this past week, Alex finished his transition to the toddler room at his daycare center. We know he’s a pretty easygoing kid. At daycare, he’s the “social butterfly” — the kid the teachers always welcome to visit their rooms because he’s predictably happy and low-maintenance.

But even for an easy-going toddler, transitioning to a new routine is stressful. And it appears that Alex has latched on to his swaddling blanket as the talisman that will get him used to spending his days in the toddler room at his daycare. He now carries his blanket with him everywhere. Lucky for us, we’ve been using three swaddle blankets since Alex has been born, and he doesn’t care which of the three he has with him. He just needs to have a blanket.

What’s kind of amazing to watch is how he can move around without tripping himself. These are big blankets. But it doesn’t stop him. He just wraps the blanket across his shoulders and goes. Here he is, running around our living room:

Every now and then, he has to pause for a pretend nap.

On rare occasions, he’s excited enough that he’ll drop the blanket to run somewhere else.

But these days, it’s pretty rare when he wants to run off without that security.

Here’s one last picture. It doesn’t keep with the blanket theme, but I like how it turned out.

I’m Getting Dizzy!

20 05 2007

One of Alex’s favorite pastimes this weekend was to sit in the swivel chair in or workroom. We’d spin him around and around. He loves it.

Pucker Up!

13 05 2007

I don’t have new pictures this weekend. But I can report that Alex has learned a new trick: He knows how to kiss. He learned how to do it this weekend. If I’m holding him, and pucker my lips, and loudly go “Mmmmmm”, he’ll eventually turn to me and try to eat my lips.

Yes, it’s kind of slobbery, but I guess it’s one of the joys of fatherhood.

Windermere Cup

6 05 2007

This Saturday was the Windermere Cup crew race. It’s one of the harbingers of spring in Seattle. I know I’ve been posting photographs of “spring” flowers for a couple of months now, but at this northern latitude, we don’t trust that spring has really arrived until May. Come May, we have the Windermere Cup, Copper River king salmon, and the Seattle International Film Festival to suggest that warm(er) weather might be here to stay.

For those who aren’t from Seattle, the Windermere Cup is a crew race that also marks the start of “boating season” in Seattle. If you live in our neighborhood, this day stands out because of its effect on local traffic. For a couple of days prior to the event, pleasure boats start lining up on the Montlake cut. This causes all sorts of rubbernecking delays on the 520 bridge, because the local drivers apparently have never seen boats before.

The Montlake Cut and the Montlake Bridge


After a few days of rubbernecking traffic, things reach their peak on Saturday. For most of Saturday, the Montlake bridge is closed to car traffic. In the morning, they do a crew race through the Montlake cut. In the afternoon, they have a parade of pleasure boats to kick off the start of boating season.

For the past five years of living in this neighborhood, Molly & I just knew this event from the traffic. This year, we decided we’d take Alex to the races. We might as well get the benefit of living within (extended) walking distance! Our friend Meredith joined us in the morning, and we took the 30-minute walk along the Burke-Gilman bike trail to see the festivities.

All told, it was a fun morning. The weather was nice. A wee bit chilly, and a wee bit overcast, but no rain! When we got to the Montlake cut, it had the pure feeling of watching a minor league baseball game; athletics uncorrupted by money. But in this case, the athletics involved racing in narrow boats in an extremely narrow stretch of water.


And there was something about the scenery of boats and water that reminded us why we like living in Seattle.

Alex had a great time, too, as he got to roam about on the grass. And there were lots of people nearby to keep him occupied. And did I mention sticks? There were lots of sticks on the ground, and Alex loved them. He wanted to eat them.

When he wasn’t eating sticks, he was sharing goldfish with new-found friends.

While Alex was a trooper during the morning, he eventually crashed. We had to walk him home before the parade of pleasure boats. Something for us to do next year, I guess.

When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom’d

6 05 2007

When lilacs last in the dooryard bloom’d,

And the great star early droop’d in the western sky in the night,

I mourn’d, and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring…

(From Memories of President Lincoln, by Walt Whitman)


6 05 2007

So Saturday morning, I had the bright idea of letting Alex feed himself yogurt. Molly’d just bought some toddler spoons. And Alex is also rather insistent about feeding himself most other foods. How different could yogurt be?

Not that different, it turns out. Just like all of the other foods he eats, he ate the yogurt with his fingers. And the spoon was, for the most part, just a toy.